Rugby rape trial: Text and What's App exchanges boasting of sexual activity read to jury

Update 4.45pm: Text and WhatsApp exchanges involving men connected to an alleged rape have been read to Belfast Crown Court.

The jury heard of text exchanges between the accused boasting about sexual activity.

In one, Stuart Olding was asked by a friend "how was she?" and was further asked: "Any sluts get f*****?"

Later Olding wrote on a WhatsApp group called 'Jacome': "We are all top shaggers. There was a bit of spit roasting going on last night."

Paddy Jackson added: "There was a lot of spit roast last night."

Olding wrote: "It was like a merry-go-round at the carnival."

Jackson, 26, from Oakleigh Park in Belfast, and Olding, 24, from Ardenlee Street in the city, deny raping the same woman.

Jackson denies a further charge of sexual assault.

Further exchanges between Rory Harrison and Blane McIlroy were read out at Belfast Crown Court.

Blane McIlroy

The day after the alleged attack Harrison wrote to Blane McIlroy: "Mate the scenes last night were hilarious.

"Walked upstairs and there were more flutes than July 12."

Harrison, 25, from Manse Road in Belfast denies perverting the course of justice and withholding information.

McIlroy, 26, from Royal Lodge Road, also in Belfast, denies one count of exposure.

Update 12.25pm: Detective denies trying to catch Rory Harrison off guard A lawyer for a friend of two Ireland and Ulster rugby players accused of rape has suggested police tried to "catch him off guard" when he voluntarily attended a police station.

Gavan Duffy QC, representing Rory Harrison, who denies perverting the course of justice and withholding information about the alleged rape in June 2016, was cross-examining a detective constable who conducted the police interviews.

Mr Duffy asked if a "deliberate decision" had been taken not to provide Harrison with his statement in order to make the interview process more difficult.

Rory Harrison. Denies trying to cover up what’s alleged to have happened at Paddy Jackson’s home in June 2016

He said: "Is it right that a senior officer gave you a direction not to give Mr Harrison his statement?"

The police officer said: "I believe that's correct."

Belfast Crown Court heard that Harrison had voluntarily attended Musgrave PSNI station in Belfast on October 4 2016 on the understanding that he was making another witness statement.

He was not accompanied by a solicitor and waited four hours for his specified lawyer.

His barrister added: "Was it a deliberate decision not to tell Mr Harrison he was going to be interviewed under caution to catch him off guard?"

The officer answered: "Absolutely not. I have no evidence to suggest that."

The detective also noted that, by October, Harrison's statement had become "police evidence".

During the course of the interviews, police had asked how Harrison guessed his friends Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding had been accused of rape.

Given that his client knew police were investigating assault allegations and that the complainant had told him about non-consensual activity, it would have been "blindingly obvious", Mr Duffy suggested.

Th officer said: "I wouldn't agree it would be blindingly obvious."

The high-profile case, in its 23rd day, is being heard before a jury of eight men and three women.

Jackson, 26, from Oakleigh Park in Belfast, and Olding, 24, from Ardenlee Street in the city, deny raping the same woman.

Jackson denies a further charge of sexual assault.

Blane McIlroy, 26, from Royal Lodge Road, Belfast, denies exposure, while Harrison, 25, from Manse Road, Belfast, denies perverting the course of justice and withholding information.

The case continues.

Earlier: Detective denies trying to catch Rory Harrison off guard

A PSNI detective has denied trying to catch Rory Harrison off guard by not telling him he was to be questioned under caution until he arrived at the police station.

Mr. Harrison from Manse Road in Belfast denies trying to cover up what’s alleged to have happened at Paddy Jackson’s home in June 2016.

Mr. Jackson is accused of raping a woman in his bedroom. His Ireland and Ulster rugby teammate Stuart Olding also denies raping the same woman.

Another friend of theirs called Blane McIlroy from Royal Lodge Road in Belfast is facing one count of exposure.

The court also heard today that Mr. Harrison wasn't given a copy of his witness statement before he was interviewed under caution in October 2016.

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